Class of 1991
By Minei Fualaau-Pomroy
If we look at what we wanted to be in high school, some of us could say we had fulfilled our goals. This was not the case for Stephanie Namihira. After graduating from Waiakea High School in 1991, she planned to become an accountant like her father. However, while in an accounting class at UH Hilo, she had an epiphany and realized that being an accountant wasn’t really what she wanted to be. She said that she had an “out-of-body experience” as she sat at her desk, looked around the classroom at her fellow students with their heads bent down, most with furrowed brows and others with grimaces on their faces and realized that accounting was not for her. When her friend, Amy Hennessey, suggested that she should try the field of public relations because it was a lot more fun, Stephanie took her advice and changed her major.
Before she earned her journalism degree from UH Manoa, with a specialization in public relations, she also took coursework at Hawaii Pacific University and Honolulu Community College. Stephanie interned part-time at the Queens Medical Center’s public relations department where she loved her job and the people she worked with. Once she earned her degree, they offered her a full-time position.
According to Stephanie, public relations is a broad term that encompasses many functions, with the ultimate purpose of communicating some type of message to specifically targeted audiences. This can be done through the media, advertising, community events and programs, the Internet or person to person.
Stephanie works in public relations at Meadow Gold Dairies in Honolulu while still running her own public relations company, Zen Communications. Some of the events she has organized include the Annual Meadow Gold Oahu Healthy Baby Contest, the Annual Meadow Gold Milk Carton Regatta, and the Hawaii Family Dental Center’s Smile Fest. She has also coordinated the media relations activities for the 51st Annual Hinano Moloka’I Hoe (2002-2004) and the Hawaii Parkinson Association’s Annual Symposium (2002-2004). She has also done work with the World of Feng Shui and the Hawaii Community Foundation